Outfit Of The Yesterday: White Lace + Rose Gold + A Swingy, Swingy Trench (& Good Grief)

♫: Sail – Noosa

A bit of a heavier (and longer) post for tonight. I unexpectedly lost someone important in my life this past  January, someone that inspired and influenced me greatly not only in the world of fashion and personal style, but in how to graciously live life as well. I have spent the three months since trying to dream up a fitting tribute to this person to post here with little success, because the impact this person had on my life goes beyond anything I can adequately articulate on a little funny fashion blog. And, honestly, because it still hurts to think of it. I can still hear my boss’ voice wobbling and cracking over the phone when he called me that Saturday morning to tell me the news.

But after finding this picture of her in a mailer the town sent out this past week,  I had to at least come here and try.

(…because this photo is fabulous.)

The best place to start this story is from the beginning. Cathy was the first person that I met when I moved to this town ten years ago. She was also the most important person that I met when I moved to this town now ten years ago–although I didn’t quite know it back then. I will never forget meeting her, though, and seeing her tiny stature and flash of red hair peeking out from behind the counter of where I now work. She was shorter than me, smiling; and spoke in a soft, sing-songy voice.

Over the past decade her and I logged thousands of hours together behind that counter. Being managers, we both often worked shifts no one else wanted to do–nights, holidays, and lots of weekends. Those were secretly the best shifts, though, because during those shifts we would talk, gossip, and gab.

Cathy taught me important things during our time at work together, very important things–like how to always be patient and kind even in the most precarious of situations (which isn’t always an easy task when working with the public!). She also taught me how she really felt about Brangelina (she was Team Jen), how hula-hooping would help me grow a bigger bust-line (and even provided a full, live active demonstration of how to do it–what can I say, we were apparently having an extremely slow Saturday night?), and how to secretly order items for her on skymall.com that she had seen in the magazine while traveling (so her husband wouldn’t find out, of course).

She even taught me a little bit about love. Wait–scratch that. She taught me a lot about love. It was only with her persistent harassment insistence that I went out on my first date with my husband.  Not that there was anything wrong with him, he would make me stutter and turn an embarrassingly bright, burning red whenever he smiled and spoke to me, but I had just gotten out of a relationship and wasn’t quite so interested in another trivial pursuit. Cathy, however, had known my husband since he was a little boy. She knew that we would be a great match, and that he didn’t have cooties like the rest of them, and my goodness. She was right. She was so right.

She was extremely well-known throughout our entire community; popular for her kindness to others, her charity, her boundless energy, her optimism, and her funny little quips. And of course, her and I bonded over our love of fashion. She had impeccable style in spite of her petite stature–she was tucking her pants into boots way before anyone else…and had enough pins, scarves, and baubles to match nearly any print, pattern, or color ever made. She was simply the loveliest person; lovely both inside and out.

{my favorite pictures of her circa 2003, 2004} {8 years ago–I look like a baby!}

 

I am honestly not quite sure when it will sink in that she is truly gone. I still expect to see her bop around the corner and say, “Hey kid, what’s new with you?” as she would often do. I still expect to see her rock back and forth on the balls of her feet to appear taller, to see her lean on the counter and kick her leg back and up as a stretch when she had been standing for too long, and to see her cans of ginger ale on the counter, always jabbed open with a lipstick-coated, neon-hued bendy straw.

I still expect to hear her hum and sing as she moved, and to hear her sweet laugh ring out above the noise of the crowd.  It has been a  surreal  few months for all of us (and if it has been hard for us, her co-workers, I can’t even imagine what it’s been like for her husband of 60 years, her family, and her lifelong friends), and I am not sure if what happened in January will ever quite fully sink in.

All I know is that I was only one person, one little person out of the many that she touched and inspired during her life, and for that I feel forever grateful. Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises, was oftentimes filled with your tears. She was amazing.

On to more lighthearted things. She knew of this blog and would often ask me to pull it up for her whenever we worked together, so let’s get to an outfit.

I fell in love with the little white lace dress that I am wearing below from Love (via ASOS), and while I do enjoy a good, swingy white dress (this one even has two layers so it isn’t see-thru), I do think it looks better belted (like with the Infinite Glisten Belt from Anthropologie). Add an equally swingy lightweight trench on top (like this one from Warehouse) and swings, swing, swingy, swings, swingy:

{faster, for your entertainment}

 

Jacket: Warehouse, c/o (buy it here)

Dress: ASOS (buy it here) (also comes in navy) (similar under $50)

Belt: Anthropologie Infinite Glisten Belt (buy it here) (similar here) (similar here)

Bracelet: Anthropologie (buy it here – on sale for $10)

Shoes: Zara (buy them here) (similar under $100)

Bag: Chloe Marcie Crossbody in Cashmere Gray (similar, smaller Marcie here) (similar here) (similar under $50)

 

 

 

 

  • Kylie Kozak

    Hi Chloe!

    I found your blog while actually searching for the Anthropologie belt in this post!
    I came across it on Pintrest and fell in love with it (it would be the perfect addition to my wedding dress), only to find that Anthropologie no longer carries it! I even contacted them to see if they have one hidden away in a warehouse somewhere. No luck. What I’m now wondering is if you ever thought about selling yours? I know that sounds completely strange…BUT I figured I had nothing to lose by asking! Please let me know if you decide you’d like to sell it. Thank you!
    Kylie

  • Stacey B

    I love the way you write your posts and you look gorgeous here!

    xoxo

    Stacey

    Five Minute Style

  • How amazing that Cathy touched your life in so many ways! Hugs to you and husband. Lovely tribute.

  • gigiofca

    Your beloved friend sounds like an angel. Big ((hugs)) to you. I enjoyed reading your beautiful tribute.

  • Caroline L.

    Such a touching & beautiful tribute – she sounds like a most amazing woman & I know she is somewhere far more beautiful and peaceful than we could ever imagine – somewhere perfect for those beautiful and precious souls that were far too good for this world.

  • beautygirl24

    Beautiful words Chloe. You write so well, and I think she would be very happy with this tribute. I have tears in my eyes.

  • One of the most beautiful tribute I have ever read, Chloe! She’s an amazing woman. I am truly sorry for your loss.

  • Mindy Dollarhide

    Your tribute was very lovely, and heartfelt. Losing Amazing people sucks :(

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. She seems like a lovely woman.

  • Vava Shagwell

    very, very sorry for your loss. You must be feeling a huge void in your heart these days. It didn’t seem as if you were posting as often and so I wondered if something was going on there. Take care and give your hubby an extra hug and kiss today.

  • I am so sorry for your loss, Chloe – she sounds like an amazing woman.

Chloe, Colorful Colorado.
5'2" on a good day. 30's. A wearer of many hats. Likes fashion, good music, anything cinnamon flavored & pretty, pretty shoes. Loves her two chihuahuas, tickle fights with her husband, traveling, digging around on the internet for fun finds, Colorado, and always lugging around a camera or two...(more)

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